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Azerbaijan sues Armenia over the extensive destruction of natural areas in Karabakh

Azerbaijan sues Armenia over the extensive destruction of natural areas in Karabakh

It was recently reported in the Turkish media that Azerbaijan seeks to sue Armenia for violating the Bern Convention and causing “extensive destruction” to the environment during their 30-year occupation of Karabakh in violation of four UN Security Council Resolutions: “Armenia’s widespread deforestation, unsustainable logging and pollution through significant construction and mining in areas that were protected nature reserves prior to the occupation has put over 500 wildlife species at risk in Azerbaijan.”

Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry claimed that there is evidence showing how the environment was adversely affected to build the Demirli-1 copper molybdenumun mine, the Galacha hydropower plant in Lachin and the Chardaghli coal mine: “Armenia’s actions have also caused extraordinary levels of river pollution.  In keeping with the United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, Azerbaijan calls on the international community to condemn Armenia’s appalling destruction during the occupation of one of the world’s most rich and biodiverse ecosystems.”

The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry’s statement added: “Within the framework of arbitration, Azerbaijan demands to order Armenia to cease all ongoing violations of the Bern Convention and pay full reparation for its environmental destruction in the formerly occupied territories.”

Rabbi Zamir Isayev, who recently was at the Lachin Corridor standing in solidarity with Azerbaijani environmental activists who are presently protesting Armenia’s ecocide and the exploitation of Azerbaijan’s natural resources in violation of international law, stated in an exclusive interview: “The reality on the ground is that the Azerbaijani eco-activists are there almost 40 days.   They are absolutely right in their requirement to let them monitor the mines.  They are exploiting the mines and polluting the Azerbaijani nature.  This affects the entire world.”

According to him, “The international community has to support the Azerbaijani eco activists.   Every eco-activist should be involved with this as it involves nature protection.  We call on them to support Azerbaijani eco-activists.  The exploitation and use of Azerbaijani territory is uncalled for.  The Armenians are lying about the blocking of the area.  I was there.  Humanitarian convoys continue to provide for Armenian civilians all the time.  The Jewish community stands with the Azerbaijani activists and their right to protect their land.”

The peaceful Azerbaijani environmental protests continue along the Lachin Corridor despite the cold weather.   The Azerbaijani eco-activists are protesting against the fact that Azerbaijani environmental experts have been denied the ability to monitor the illegal exploitation of mines in areas of Karabakh monitored by Russian peacekeepers. 

Last December, a group of Azerbaijani environmental experts were supposed to monitor the environmental conditions at the ‘Gizilbulagh’ gold deposit and the ‘Damirli’ copper-molybdenum deposit, but were not given the chance to.  Since then, Azerbaijani environmental activists have been protesting both against Armenia’s wanton destruction of nature in Karabakh and also how Russia is complicit in this grave crime.    



Rachel Avraham

Rachel Avraham is the CEO of the Dona Gracia Center for Diplomacy and the editor of the Economic Peace Center, which was established by Ayoob Kara, who served as Israel's Communication, Cyber and Satellite Minister. For close to a decade, she has been an Israel-based journalist, specializing in radical Islam, abuses of human rights and minority rights, counter-terrorism, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Azerbaijan, Syria, Iran, and other issues of importance. Avraham is the author of “Women and Jihad: Debating Palestinian Female Suicide Bombings in the American, Israeli and Arab Media," a ground-breaking book endorsed by Former Israel Consul General Yitzchak Ben Gad and Israeli Communications Minister Ayoob Kara that discusses how the media exploits the life stories of Palestinian female terrorists in order to justify wanton acts of violence. Avraham has an MA in Middle Eastern Studies from Ben-Gurion University. She received her BA in Government and Politics with minors in Jewish Studies and Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Maryland at College Park.